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Fix Daily Poll: Which self-funder has the best shot at winning?

By Aaron Blake

It's been a banner year for self-funders, or so we're being led to believe. The real question is: In addition to making some lucky consultants rich, will some of these wealthy candidates actually win elective office?

So far this year, three Republican candidates -- California gubernatorial candidate Meg Whitman ($91 million self-funded), Florida gubernatorial candidate Rick Scott ($24 million) and Connecticut Senate candidate Linda McMahon ($22 million) -- have combined to spend a total of $137 million. And we've still got three months till Election Day.

But while those numbers rank among the all-time highest, we're also seeing big numbers in other top races. From Democratic Connecticut Senate hopeful Ned Lamont's $8.6 million to Michigan's GOP governor nominee, Rick Snyder, and Florida Democratic Senate hopeful Jeff Greene ($6 million each), wealthy candidates are spending big money on winning many of the biggest races on the map.

We're certainly seeing unprecedented self-funding. What would really be unprecedented, though, is if a lot of these candidates started winning.

Self-funders have a notoriously poor track record in this area (see here for a great recap of self-funders in recent cycles). At the same time, a lot of these candidates seem like the real deal. Republicans are even talking up self-funding car dealer Tom Ganley ($3 million) in the Democratic-leaning seat held by Rep. Betty Sutton (D-Ohio).

Snyder won a big primary last week and joins Ganley and Whitman in the general election. Lamont and McMahon both face primaries Tuesday, while Scott and Greene face them in two weeks.

So, dear Fixistas, who is the most likely to break through, not just in the primary, but in the general election in November?

By Aaron Blake  |  August 9, 2010; 3:45 PM ET
Categories:  Fix Daily Poll  
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